Cardano launch: how, why and… wen

With the upcoming launch of ErgoDEX on the Cardano blockchain, we thought now was a good time to explain the process we will be going through over the next few weeks. The first step is for us to launch on the Cardano testnet, this will occur on the 4th of April.

Up to this point, we have had a few delays in development, the main ones have been related to Plutus tools and Plutus script. Currently even simple contracts written in Plutus barely fit into Cardano execution and memory limits. The solution was to rewrite contracts using Plutarch — a language which provides very fine-grained control on the generated Plutus Core. With the help of Plutarch we heavily optimized our smart-contracts.

Cardano Testnet

This is a crucial first step forward for any decentralized application that is going to be live on the Cardano blockchain. To quote the Cardano summary of what exactly a testnet is:

The Cardano testnet gives stake pool operators and smart contract developers the opportunity to actively test core Cardano functionality prior to deploying on mainnet. This includes stake pool operation, native tokens, metadata, smart contract testing, and DeFi cost estimation.

A testnet is very similar to the mainnet, the advantage is that the funds used to test have no monetary value. When designing a dapp that one day may lock hundreds of millions in TVL (Total Value Locked) it is extremely important to test a dapp in every possible scenario to find any security risks. The testnet allows developers to launch a project’s smart contracts, and then test every possible scenario and improve on the design if issues are found. This allows users to have peace of mind when the dapp is launched on the mainnet.

Similar to other dapps that will be launching on the Cardano mainnet in the coming months, we would like to ask people to manage their expectations. Initially, it may take longer to process transactions than anyone would like, but the Cardano blockchain has a number of improvements coming that will help alleviate this issue, below are just a few!

Block Size Increase

A block size increase means that more transactions can fit in every block, this was recently increased from 64kb to 72kb. This will likely happen quite frequently.

Plutus Script Enhancements

This will allow huge script optimisation on the network and will be achieved with multiple Cardano Improvement proposals that can be found on the IOHK blog page here.

  • Reference inputs (CIP-0031) — Plutus scripts can inspect transaction inputs without needing to spend them. This means that it is not necessary to create UTXOs simply to inspect the information held by an input.
  • Plutus Datums (CIP-0032) — Datums can be attached directly to outputs instead of datum hashes. This simplifies how datums are used, as a user can see the actual datum rather than having to supply the datum that matches the given hash.
  • Script sharing (CIP-0033) — Plutus script references can be associated with transaction outputs, meaning that they can be recorded on-chain for subsequent reuse. It will not be necessary to supply a copy of the script with each transaction, hugely reducing friction for developers. Reusing scripts in multiple transactions significantly reduces transaction sizes, improving throughput and reducing script execution costs.

In Conclusion

The future of Cardano DeFi is bright, there are lots of great minds working tirelessly to provide new technology and tools and are paving the way for future developers. Competition is good in the space as this is what drives innovation. We are excited to see how the next year plays out! Thank you everyone for giving us the opportunity to show you what ErgoDEX can bring to the people!




A non-custodial, decentralized exchange that allows a quick, effortless, and secure transfer of liquidity between the Ergo and Cardano networks.

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A non-custodial, decentralized exchange that allows a quick, effortless, and secure transfer of liquidity between the Ergo and Cardano networks.

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